Friday, 30 January 2015

Word of the Week 30th January 2015

This week I have chosen a word that has well and truly taken over everything.

That word is...

The twins loved waking up to snow everywhere on Thursday. Isabella even said "look Mummy, Elsa has been!". They were amazed by the huge snow flakes that were falling down. Once the snow stopped falling we got ready to brave the cold and have a play in the garden! I have never known the twins so eager to get dressed. We were ready in record time, waterproof suits on, wellies on and coats on. The cold didn't bother them a bit, they ran up and down listening to the snow crunching under their feet. They looked at all of their snow covered toys shouting "Oh no! My toy!" before chuckling and dashing off to the next part of the garden to examine. Even the cat came out to have a look. At first she was not sure but before too long she too was running all over the garden. After playing for about 40 minutes I persuaded them in by tempting them with some hot milk and a biscuit. 

The snow is now starting to melt and they have asked where it has gone and if we are getting anymore. 

The snow really has been the highlight of the week hence why it is this weeks Word of the Week. These pictures are also My Captured Moments.

I am sharing my Word of the Week with Jocelyn from The Reading Residence and My Captured Moment with Heledd from Running In Lavender.

The Reading Residence
Running in Lavender

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Nectarine Coconut Cake

Since I have started baking with gluten free flours I have become more and more curious about experimenting with different flours. A few weeks ago I found some coconut flour. The hubby and I love coconut so I bought it to try. However as I am still experimenting with alternative flours I needed to do some research before I got started.

Coconut flour bakes require a lot more liquid than with regular flours so I used extra eggs. As I used so many eggs I did not need to add the xanthan gum as the eggs not only add liquid but they also bind the ingredients together.

This is what I came up with...

Nectarine Coconut Cake


100g coconut flour
50g ground almonds
150g spread, softened
150g caster sugar
1tsp baking powder
2 nectarines, sliced
1/2tsp vanilla paste
2tbsp clear honey
6 eggs


Pre heat the oven to 180C fan/400F/gas mark 6

1 - Mix together the spread and caster sugar until light and creamy

2 - Add the coconut flour, ground almonds, baking powder, vanilla paste, the eggs and mix well until all of the ingredients are evenly combined

3 - Add the honey and gently mix in

4 - Line and grease a cake tin and spoon in the cake mixture, it will be thicker than a regular cake mixture

5 - Layer the nectarine slices over the top of the cake mixture and place in the centre of the pre heated oven and bake for 45 minutes

6 - Once the cake is thoroughly baked leave to cool in the tin

Once the cake has cooled remove from the tin, slice and serve.

The coconut flour not only gives the cake extra flavour but also changes the texture of the cake. This really is a deliciously moist cake and the nectarine add a lovely tang.

Enjoy x

I am sharing this recipe with the lovely Helen from Casa Costello - Bake of the Week

Casa Costello

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Weight Loss Journey - Week 4 2015

After last weeks disappointment I found a new determination to succeed.

This week I have changed how I am eating. I was having a shake for breakfast, however I am a believer in eating to get your metabolism going. I was unsure whether a shake would give it the kick start it needs so I am now having a Juice Plus meal replacement bar for breakfast followed by a shake at lunch time.

I am enjoying the freedom that the Slimming World plan gives in regard to both food, drink and syns! I now feel that I have found a healthy balance between shakes and food.

This week I attended my second leg, bums and tums class. Last week I literally hurt all over. This week I can feel that I have worked out but I don't hurt as much as I did last week which is positive. Next week I am increasing my work out from one class a week to two.

I have also decided to change my weigh in day from Monday to Wednesday. I have done this as over the weekend I am more likely to have more treats that are within my allowed syns so I felt Monday wasn't the best day to weigh in!

This week I am delighted with my weight loss and feel encouraged that the way I have decided to combine the two plans is working for me. This week I have lost 3lbs!

My Progress So Far

  • Starting weight 03/11/14 - 12st 13lbs
  • Last weeks weight - 11st 13lbs
  • This weeks weight - 11st 10lbs
  • Total loss - 1st 3lbs (17lbs)
I am sharing my Weight Loss Journey with Sim's Life and The Musing Housewife Weight Loss Wednesday and Madhouse Family Reviews - Sunday Weigh In.

Sim's Life

Cool Cookery Fish Pie - Family Favourites

Recently I was challenged by BritMums and Cool Cookery to create a meal using frozen ingredients. Using frozen foods is a great way to reduce food waste as you simply take what you need and return the rest to the freezer. Food waste inevitably costs us money. Research has shown that the average family could save up to £250 a year by by using frozen foods!

When foods are frozen from fresh they are able to retain a lot of the goodness which fresh foods start to loose after harvesting, catching or slautering. Frozen vegetables are often frozen just hours after harvesting. There are so many frozen foods available, they go way beyond just chips, peas and fish fingers! With so many different vegetables, herbs, meat and fish available you really can create delicious home cooked meals using frozen foods.

For this weeks Family Favourites I am going to show you an easy fish pie that is made using frozen ingredients.

Here is this weeks Family Favourites recipe...

Family Favourites Easy Fish Pie

Ingredients serves 8

150g frozen sliced leeks
100g frozen sweetcorn
100g frozen petit pois
200g frozen mixed mushrooms
800g frozen fish pie mix
270g jumbo raw king prawns (defrost before use!)
2 x 650g bags of Aunt Bessie's frozen mash potato
1tsp dried parsley
1/2tsp ground black pepper
400mls milk


Pre heat the oven to 180C fan/400F/gas mark 6

1 - Place the frozen fish in an oven proof dish, pour over the milk, add the parsley, black pepper, cover with either a lid or some foil and place in the centre of the pre heated oven for 20 minutes

2 - Heat 1tbsp of olive oil in a large frying pan and over a medium heat gently fry the leeks for 5 minutes

3 - Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook for a further 10 minutes

4 - Drain any excess liquid from the leeks and mushrooms and return to the heat

5 - Pour over a drizzle of olive oil and add the raw king prawns and cook for 3 minutes

6 - Add the leeks, mushrooms and prawns to the fish pie mix and return to the oven for 20 minutes

7 - After 20 minutes add the frozen peas and sweetcorn, cover and continue to cook in the oven for a further 20 minutes

8 - 10 minutes before the fish pie base is ready place the mashed potato discs into a large non stick saucepan and cook over a medium heat, stirring continuously to prevent sticking

9 - Once the mash potato is cooked and smooth remove from the heat

10 - Remove the fish pie base from the oven and drain off any excess milk don't throw the milk away add it to the mash potatoes to give them a creamy fish finish

11 - Spoon the mashed potatoes on to the fish pie base and grill for a couple of minutes to crisp the top

This meal will be loved by all, adults and children alike. Frozen fish is often cheaper to buy than fresh fish which makes it a more affordable way to add more fish to your diet. 

Pouring the excess milk from the poached fish to the mash give the potatoes a depth of flavour and it prevents wasting the delicious milk that is full of flavour.

Enjoy x

Disclosure: I’m working with BritMums and highlighting the versatility, economy and nutritional benefits of cooking with frozen food. All opinions are my own. For recipes and ideas visit

I am sharing my Fish Pie recipe with Honest Mum - Tasty Tuesdays.

Tasty Tuesdays on

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Point and Shoot - Garden Fun for the Twins and Dotty

This weekend saw a welcomed return to playing in the garden.

The twins love being out playing in the fresh air. On Sunday it was cool but dry and as soon as the twins saw the hubby was in the garden their wellies were on and they were out.

Another one who was dying to get out was our 9 month old kitten, Dotty. So far she has been a house cat. However when she had her operation at the beginning of the month we also got an ID chip put in. So we decided to let her have a play outside with the twins. We were relieved to see that she didn't venture far. But she adored the freedom to run up and down from side to side. I was concerned we wouldn't be able to get her in but I was wrong. As soon as the twins came in and closed the door she darted from the far end of the garden to come in.

After a long play outside both the twins and Dotty needed a nap!

Here is our garden fun in pictures...

I am sharing our weekend fun with Snowing Indoors and You Baby Me Mummy Point and Shoot and Eco-Gites Animal Tales.



Extra Special Scrambled Eggs with The Happy Egg Company

With this week being Breakfast Week I thought it would be the perfect time to share with you a scrambled egg recipe that is extra special.

Scrambled eggs are a great easy meal that is full of protein from the eggs. There are so many different variations but the majority of the time we make the good old cheesy version.

The Happy Egg Company have challenged their Happy Egg Taste Makers to come up with a new scrambled egg recipe. We were told that we must incorporate the following into our recipes:

  • A vegetable or a source of fish/meat
  • A herb or spice
  • A surprise ingredient
This got my taste buds going and this is what I came up with...

 Smoked Salmon and Asparagus Scrambled Eggs


2 eggs
1 slice of smoked salmon, chopped
3 spears of asparagus, chopped
1 tsp soft goats cheese
60mls milk
Sprig of dill, chopped


1 - Place the chopped asparagus in a pan of boiling water and simmer for 3 minutes before draining and putting to one side

2 - Beat the eggs in a bowl

3 - Add the milk, smoked salmon, goats cheese and 1tsp of chopped fresh dill

4 - Place in a pan and heat over a medium heat stirring continuously

5 - After the eggs have cooked for 2 minutes add the asparagus and continue cooking until the eggs are cooked

Serve immediately on a slice of seeded bread with a little smoked salmon and a sprig of dill.

The goats cheese adds a creamy flavour to the smokiness from the salmon. It transforms regular scrambled eggs into something extra special.

Disclosure: I am part of The Happy Egg Company Happy Egg Taste Makers bloggers group. This post is my entry to the January Scrambled Egg challenge. I was sent a voucher for the eggs.

I am sharing my recipe with Honest Mum - Tasty Tuesdays.

Tasty Tuesdays on

Monday, 26 January 2015

The teapigs #MatchaChallenge

When I saw a request from teapigs for bloggers to take the two week Matcha Challenge I jumped at the chance. I was delighted to find out that I had been selected to take part!

To take part in the matcha challenge I was asked to drink matcha everyday for two weeks and see if I felt any changes at the end of the challenge. I was sent a teapigs Matcha Kit so that I had what I needed to get started. The kit contained:
  • 30g tin of Matcha
  • Electric hand held whisk
  • A shot glass
  • An information leaflet
  • Matcha badge
  • Spoon

If you are wondering what matcha is let me tell you what it is, and how it can benefit you.

Matcha is 100% natural, organic green tea leaves. It is like no other green tea, the leaves have been ground down into a fine powder. When you drink matcha you are drinking all of the goodness unlike with regular green tea where you only consume a portion of the goodness as the remaining nutrients are left in the bag and put in the bin. Matcha tea leaves are grown in Japan and are grown undercover for the final two weeks. This enables to plant to produce lots of chlorophyll which gives it the bright green "good stuff". Matcha is not new, it has been drunk in Japan for almost 900 years as part of their tea ceremony. It is also used by Buddhist monks as it keeps them alert, awake and focused during long periods of meditation.

Until recently all matcha was consumed in Japan, however it is now becoming more and more popular in the UK.

After researching matcha further on various websites I was amazed by the possible benefits from drinking this super green powder. They include:
  • Packed with Antioxidants including flavonoids which help protect our bodies against harmful free radicals such as pollution, UV rays, radiation and chemicals which can lead to cell damage.
  • Naturally detoxifies the body
  • Improves mood and increases concentration
  • Calms
  • Boosts metabolism which ultimately burns calories
  • Lowers cholesterol and blood sugar
  • Contains the naturally occurring acid l-theanine which along with caffeine is a well know stimulant
Before Taking The #MatchaChallenge

If you are a regular Hijacked By Twins reader you will be aware that during the last 6 months I have struggled with depression and anxiety. This was one of the reasons I was so keen to try matcha. Having read that this super green drink can improve moods and calms I was excited and curious to see if it would work. Along with my depression came a lack of motivation which in turn resulted in a low mood. I was stuck in a vicious cycle.

During The #MatchaChallenge

I was amazed by how quickly I noticed the change in my mood. At first I wondered if it was purely a coincidence but my mood continued to lift. I became more motivated which in turn lifted my mood further. I recently cut out coffee and have longed for a drink to replace it and at last I found it! Matcha became part of my morning breakfast routine and I felt that it gave me a kick start to the day. In general I felt better in both my mood and my body.

How To Drink Matcha

There are many ways to drink and consume matcha. So far I have drunk it...

as a shot using hot water at 70C

as a latte with almond milk

as a cup of tea

even in my slimming shake

After The #MatchaChallenge

Once the Matcha Challenge had finished I decided to have a couple of matcha free days to see if I could really see a difference. After the first morning of having little energy I was straight back to drinking matcha. I have honestly noticed a change in how I am feeling both mentally and physically. I have the motivation for the day ahead. I feel that matcha has helped me over come my anxiety and has lifted my mood no end. I am me again! I have also noticed an improvement in my skin, I am more alert and certainly a lot less anxious. I will continue to drink matcha daily and am enjoying finding new ways to incorporate it into my diet further. Keep an eye out for more recipes using matcha!

For further information about matcha or to purchase matcha visit teapigs. Also during January 2015 teapigs are offering 20% off their matcha range when you use the discount code MATCHA15.

Disclosure: I was sent the teapigs matcha kit for the purpose of this post. No payment was received. All views and opinions are my own and 100% honest.

I am sharing with:

Tasty Tuesdays on
Family Fever

Weekly Meal Plan - 26th January 2015

This week I have really got to think about my meal plan. On Saturday my cooker decided to stop working. Thankfully the hob still works but I have no oven. However every cloud has a silver lining, as the oven has broken it means I can get my dream range oven sooner than planned!

This week's meals will be cooked on the hob and I also have my slow cooker so I am sure I will manage. If I desperately need an oven my mum and dad are only down the road and I'm sure I'll be able to use their oven if need be.

This is what we will be enjoying this week.

Week Commencing 26th January 2015

Thin Beef Steaks

I love minute steaks as they are so quick to cook and are always tender cuts of meat. I will season the steaks before frying and will serve with homemade chips (thankfully I have a hot air fryer!) and beans for the children and hubby. I will be having my steak with salad.

Lentils and Roots

This meal uses green lentils as a base and is jam packed with root vegetables and finished with crispy bacon.

Slow Cooked Turkey

I had a turkey dinner planned last week however the meat didn't get taken out of the freezer so there was a slight change. This week I will be cooking the turkey breast in my slow cooker. I have never cooked it this way so it will be good to see how the flavour differs.

Leftover Turkey Curry

There will no doubt be a lot of leftover turkey so I will transform it into a good old leftover curry.


I am going to make some meatballs in a tomato and vegetable sauce with pasta.

As always I am sharing my Weekly Meal Plan with At Home With Mrs M - Meal Planning Monday.

mpm different fonts.png